Charles Pétillon's Balloon Installations


Photo Titled Mutations 2

Charles Pétillon Creates Photographic Stories With Site-Specific Balloon Installations

Published On: 7/12/17

O, the balloon - a symbol of simple joy and celebration. But when installed in settings one wouldn't normally expect, they can deliver visual narratives.

Photographer Charles Pétillon is the artist behind the in situ balloon installations where his process begins with the visualization of the final framed image. Pétillon is known for his work titled 'invasions' - a series of photographs depicting balloon clusters in unusual outdoor settings. By solely using white balloons, viewers are able to focus on the overall simplicity of the form juxtaposed against its surroundings. The contrast of the two enhances the abstract representations of Pétillon's message in his photographs.

Pétillon made an impact at the 2015 London Design Festival with his 'Heartbeat' floating installation - 100,000 balloons stretched over 54 meters and 12 meters wide in London's Covent Garden Piazza. Integrated into the floating installation were lights that pulsated on and off, thus creating a beating heart within the historically rich building.

This year in Milan's Superstudio space, Pétillon partnered with textile manufacture Sunbrella to create a slightly different inflatable artwork titled 'connexions'. This large bubbly object consisted of ten enormous balloons, interconnected and covered in the latest Sunbrella Fabrics. Towering over people at 4m high, it was displayed and photographed in indoor and outdoor settings.  'Connexions' offered visitors a look at Sunbrella’s latest fabrics used in a new creative way.


To see more of Pétillon's work, visit his website where he presents both his fine art photography and commercial work.

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Thank you to Designboom for the video of heartbeats.

* Photograph of woman under the heartbeat installation was shot by Paul Grover. All others, by Pétillon.